A desiccator is an airtight enclosure that has desiccants to protect compounds from moisture. Similarly, a laboratory vacuum desiccator cabinet has a desiccant that is filled in the space below the storage platform. A stopcock is added to allow the desiccator to be evacuated. A desiccator can be used for various purposes, such as to cool heated samples, to disallow moisture from gathering. The interior is dry because of the desiccating compound at the bottom. Chemicals that absorb moisture easily can be stored in a desiccator. It is also used for vacuum testing and degassing as well as defoaming. If you need to mix liquids and biological tests, then it can be kept in a desiccator cabinet.
A laboratory vacuum desiccator cabinet has a tightly closed enclosure, and gases are removed through a vacuum pump. This leads to a low-pressure environment within the cabinet – called a vacuum. A vacuum desiccator is used for degassing, through which gases from compounds inside the cabinet are removed. Vacuum is also used to remove bulk and absorbed water or solvents from a substance. Heat along with vacuum can be very effective for drying any substance.
Benefits of Vacuum Desiccators
- Best for dry storage
- Dust free and multiple timeuse
- Can close stopcock and use with a regular desiccant
How to select the right laboratory vacuum desiccator?
- There are different types of vacuum desiccators and they serve a different purpose. Consider their use and purpose to decide which one will best fit your lab.
- You may have multiple items that have to be stored in a vacuum desiccator. They may need to be stored separately so you can organizethem better. In such cases, a cabinet with a hinged door is best. You have more than one rack and can store items in two different racks.
- If the items you are storing are large in shape then you would need a cabinet-like desiccator that can accommodate an item of a large size. Dome-like Non-vacuum dry cabinet isn’t a goodidea here, as there is a limit on the height of items that can be storedin it.
- The small, dome-like desiccator is portable and can be taken anywhere with you if you have a need for it.
- Some desiccators can hold vacuum for 72 hours and some can hold it for less. Depending on the nature and the expected length of your work or need to hold the sample, you must choose a desiccator. Higher end models, usually in the form of cabinets have this feature.
- There are large desiccator cabinets for storing a greater number of substances. There can be as many as four shelves above the desiccant material.
- If the substances stored, have to be moved around, then you can go for a mobile desiccator.
- There are small desiccator cabinets that are smaller than a microwave to fit into tiny spaces if there is a lack of space in the laboratory.